Summary: this article explains what independent sixth-form colleges are and what makes their approach to education effective.
Independent sixth-form colleges in the UK have a distinctive history. The earliest were established in the early 20th Century to prepare students for Oxbridge and for officer-level entry to the armed forces. These were the original 'crammers'. Following the Second World War more colleges, specialising in A level and O level teaching, surfaced and became better known as 'tutorial colleges'. Those gradually evolved into today's sixth-form colleges. Contemporary independent sixth-form colleges are much in demand from UK and international students seeking high-quality, examination-focused teaching. These points are explained in more detail below. Just click on the + to expand the sections you want to read.
This article was written by James Wardrobe for 'The Independent Schools Guide 2011-2012' published by Gabbitas Education. James is a CIFE representative and Director of Highfield School. He was formerly Head of Classics and Housemaster at Highfield School, Liphook (1972 - 1980), Principal of Lansdowne College (1981 -1990), Headmaster of the Hellenic College of London (1990 - 2004) and was an ISI Inspector between l994 to 2004.